Can I park my RV overnight at Target?

In today’s article, we will discuss: Can I park my RV overnight at Target? We will explain the difference between parking and camping an RV, and also offer some alternatives for spending the night in your motorhome. 

Can I park my RV overnight at Target?

Yes, you can park your RV overnight at Target, as long as the store manager allows it and you do not camp there. If you are on the road, our best advice would be to call first and ask if they allow RV parking and for how long. Also, if they do allow you to park there, make sure you stop at the end of the car park and that you also spend some cash inside the store. 

And to clear the matter, generally, a motorhome can “park” in exactly the same places as a car: in a parking space located in the street or in the parking lot of a supermarket or a motorway area (except by prefectural order or road restriction barriers).

The only condition: not to stay more than seven days on the same site. In general, the municipalities allow a parking period between 48 hours and 72 hours. You will also have to pay a post-parking charge during the day and take care not to obstruct traffic.

On the other hand, you cannot “camp” anywhere with your motorhome. Camping means getting out your holds, your outdoor furniture, your awning, your step ladder, etc. 

Can I park my RV overnight at Walmart?

Yes, some Walmart stores do allow RV travellers to use their parking lot for overnight stays. Obviously, compared to a campground, this is far from the ideal location. However, some globetrotters seek to save money by finding free areas to park overnight, especially if they are just passing through and not planning on staying.

Since most RVs are already equipped for convenience, it is easier to sleep all over the place if compared to tent camping, for example. Plus, if you ever need to shop for groceries before you leave, you’ve come to the right place to do it.

Yes, we encourage multinationals by buying from them, but we also gain in return since we were able to spend the night with peace of mind, without having to pay additional costs, and in a legal manner.

However, you have to be careful! While there are apps where riders share their experiences of overnight parking at a Walmart, the safest way is to call them directly beforehand.

Indeed, not all establishments allow RVs to use their parking space for free.

Your best bet is to ask to speak to the manager to confirm if this is indeed the case. You can also ask if there are any special rules to follow, such as the appropriate location, arrival time, etc.

If you ever have a choice of several Walmarts within a few miles of each other, choose the one that is furthest from the highway. This reduces the possibility that it is open 24 hours and by the same token, it may be quieter.

RV parking or camping, what’s the difference?

A motorhome can easily stop on a public road but on the condition that it is just parking and not parking. This is where the shoe pinches because many people do not differentiate between these two actions. If you are also in the fog, we explain the differences in the following so as not to be mistaken.

Distinguish between parking and parking a motorhome To put it simply, parking means stopping in a parking space without leaving (and therefore using) equipment such as the motorhome hold, furniture, etc. In short, parking means doing nothing to cause a disturbance (evacuate dirty water, cook food, be noisy, etc.), and that includes being well parked. The goal is to make sure that public space is not annexed for private use!

On the other hand, parking or camping is doing the exact opposite of parking – or almost. In short, it means installing various accessories (table and chair, wedge, etc.) to live for one or more days in the vehicle in a public area.

The rules that govern the motorhome Now that the difference has been made, it is time to know the regulations applied to motorhomes. In fact, these do not have specific rules governing their stopping in a parking lot, parking lot or street. 

The regulations that the owners of these “motorhomes” must follow are the same as those of a vehicle of the same category that it must follow. So you just need to know the rules of the road to know what the rules are.

Here is still a little reminder for those who have forgotten. A motorhome can stop in a public parking space as long as it is properly parked (respect for markings on the ground and other prohibitions). However, he is not allowed to stop there for more than 7 days in a row or face fines. In addition, it is forbidden to camp with the vehicle, and this also applies to all vehicles, regardless of their size.

It should be noted, however, that it is possible to eat and even sleep in a vehicle located on the public highway as long as no equipment in the car is used.

A few exceptions to know about parking your RV

More and more towns and cities are adopting the policy of no motorhome traffic on certain streets and at certain times. These exceptions are mostly found in cities where there is a huge tourist influx. Some municipalities even go so far as to ban motorhome parking, regardless of whether it is just parking. For those who want to go on vacation to certain places with this type of vehicle, it is, therefore, better to anticipate and research the rules in force.

The reasons given by mayors and other officials for requesting these accommodations are varied, but there are a number that are not necessarily legal. It is indeed easy to understand that stopping the motor home may be prohibited in narrow streets, but not all the justifications are so obvious. 

Some measures are so unjustified and considered to be abusive that it often happens that they are challenged in court and annulled … Users can file a complaint with the competent authorities, but in the event of a fine, the best reflex is still to pay a sanction, then go to court afterwards.

But in order not to have any problems, especially for those who are on vacation, it is still better to comply with a rule that is not that complicated: do not camp on a public road. Otherwise, in addition to having to pay a fine, the risk is to give badly to the motorhome users, which would be a shame.

Normally, no one should be surprised to find out that a motorhome is off-limits on a public road since municipalities are required to inform the public. In addition to posting in town halls, signs must be installed at the entrance to areas affected by this ban.

Alternatives for parking and living in your RV

As previously mentioned, more and more towns and villages are prohibiting the parking of motorhomes on public roads. However, there are always other options to consider for a vacation in the shelter of your vehicle.

There are more and more areas dedicated to parking motorhomes. But here again, you will have to ask for information in advance to know if camping is allowed or if simple parking is.

Campgrounds are also plentiful and can be rented for a reasonable price. In these spaces, motorhome users will be able to spread out and meet up with each other to fully enjoy the equipment and comfort offered by the vehicle.

Finding a place to sleep in your RV is also possible using private land. Whether it is the land of a loved one or an individual that has been used will not be a problem, even for the campsite (with the permission of the owner). 

With a little research (and luck) you might even find other RV users who are offering land for those who want to enjoy their vehicle. Some even offer free parking spaces in beautiful areas.

The bottom line

There is no instruction manual for sleeping at Target. Every store is free to choose and I would say that every manager has the final say.  Do you have a Target overnight experiences or know of a Walmart that has a great location? Share them with us in the comments!

FAQ on Can I park my RV overnight at Target?

Where can I park an RV?

An RV is perfectly entitled to park in the parking spaces along the roadway. However, its size must allow it, it must not interfere with road traffic or pedestrians. However, due to its size, the motorhome cannot park everywhere.

Where to stop with a motorhome?

A motorhome can stop in town in a parking space and spend the night there. It does not matter whether the motorhome operators are on board or not, as long as they comply with the regulations

.Is it legal to sleep in a Walmart parking lot?

The quick answer is: Yes, it is legal to sleep in a Walmart parking lot. The less quick answer is that it can be done as long as you ask for permission and adhere to the regulations and you are not camping there. 

References